Chapter 8: Thinking, Language
& Intelligence
Lectures 12,13,&14
Learning Outcomes
• Define thinking and the various concepts
involved in thinking.
• Describe how language develops.
Learning Outcomes
• Identify the concepts of intelligence and the in
techniques used to measure intelligence.
• Describe the controversy surrounding
intelligence testing.
Truth or Fiction?
Only humans can use insight to solve problems.
Crying is an early form of language.
Truth or Fiction?
Young children say things like “Daddy goed away”
and “Mommy sitted down” because they do
understand rules of grammar.
“Street smarts” are a sign of intelligence.
Truth or Fiction?
Creative people are highly intelligent.
Highly intelligent people are creative.
Truth or Fiction?
Two children can answer exactly the same items
on an intelligence test correctly, yet one child can
be above average in IQ, and the other can be
below average.
Intelligence tests measure many things other than
1. What is the Nature of Thought?
• -9/11- rational decision making?
• What does your mom look like?
– Mental image
• In alphabet what letter comes after N?
– L,M,N,O
• How much is 2+2
– Did “4” -immediately pop into your mind?
• What is Julia Roberts’s phone number?
• What is thinking?
– Attending to information, using it or
– Representing it mentally
– Reasoning about it, and
– Making judgments and decisions about it
– E.g., Making sense of and change the world
3. Mental Images & Concepts
• Mental images- a mental representation that has
some of the physical characteristics of an object
• Concept- a symbolic representations of objects; a
category, a class, that includes subtypes and/or
individual items (musical Instrument, other?)
– used to group objects, relations, events, abstractions
or qualities that have common properties, & cannot be
• Hierarchies
– Used to organize concepts
• Prototypes
– Good examples of a category of concept
• Exemplars
– Positive and Negative instances
• Overextension
4. Concepts
• Prototypes
– Good examples of a category of concept
Name the first member that comes to your mind:
A bird______
A hero______
A Color______
An animal______
A Motor Vehicle_______
• Exemplars
– Positive and Negative instances
• Overextension
5. When a Person Has a Problem?
• When s/he does not have a direct means of
attaining a particular goal
What is Problem Solving?
• Using the thoughts and actions to move from
the current state to the goal state, in other
words achieving a desired goal that is not
readily attainable, often by devising strategies
to overcome obstacles
6. Organization of Subgoals
• High school senior decides to become a doctor
• First, s/he needs to attain more immediate
1). _______
– Identifying important subgoals is not always
7. Trial and Error
• An approach to problem solving in which one
solution after another is tried in no particular
order until the answer is found
• Used when we have little or no knowledge
relevant to the problem
– Students give examples…
8. Algorithms
• Specific procedure for solving a type of problem
– Yield correct answers if the right formula is
used. Any math formula is an example of Alg
• Systematic random search (similar to trial and
– Each possible solution is tested according to a
particular set of rules
9. Heuristic
• Shortcuts; mental rules of thumb used to solve a
• Working backwards: Water lilies double the area they cover every
24hours. At the beginning of the summer there is one water lily on a pond. It
takes 60days for the pond to become covered with lilies. On what day is the
pond half covered?
• Means-end analysis (subgroups)
– Evaluate and reduce difference between the
current situation and goal
• Analogies
– Refer to a previous problem to solve a new
Logical reasoning and observation can be
used to solve the problem: Play Video Elevator
The Elevator Riddle Solution
10. Factors that Affect Problem Solving
• Expertise
– Experts use parallel processing; novices use
serial processing:
– how long it will take you to unscramble this
word: DNSUO
• Mental Sets
– Tendency to use an approach that was
previously successful with similar problem
• Insight
– Sudden perception permitting the solution
11. Factors that Affect Problem Solving
• Incubation
– Stand back from a problem for a while; solution
may come in a flash of insight
• Functional Fixedness
– Tendency to think of an object in terms of its
familiar function
12. Heuristics in Decision Making
(not covered in class, but will be included in the Quiz)
• Representativeness heuristic
– Make judgments about events according to the
population of events that they appear to
• Availability heuristic
– Estimate of probability is based on examples of
relevant events
13. Heuristics in Decision Making
(not covered in class, but will be included in the Quiz)
• Anchoring and adjustment heuristic
– First estimate serves as an anchor
– With new information we make adjustments
but remain in the proximity of the first estimate
14. Factors that Affect Decision Making
(not covered in class, but will be included in the Quiz)
• Framing effect
– Context in which information is presented
affects decision making
• Overconfidence
– Unaware of flimsiness of assumptions
– Work to bring about results that fit our
– Forget information counter to our judgment
– Self-fulfilling prophecies
15. Class Discussion on The Paradox of Choice
• Do you believe the more options you have the
• Do you find that too much choice can be
• Satisficers- “good enough”
• Maximizers- “the best possible choice”
• “Paradox of Choice” might be responsible for cultural shift in
the average age when people are settling into jobs and marriage??
• Responsible for depression in modern
Lecture 13
1. Communication by Nonhumans
• What capability most reliably sets humans
apart from all other species?
• African Grey Parrots (Discuss Video)
– Did Alex speak English? What is the difference
between Alex’s usage of language and human usage?
• Apes (Washoe, Sarah, Lana, Nim & Kanzi)
– Genetically show some ability to use language
– Use of symbols to communicate
2. Apes
• Allen & Beatrix Gardner (1969)- Washoe used
sign language beginning 1y.o. -160 signs
• David Premack (1983) –Sarah mastered notion
of similarity and difference, half and whole
• Yerkes Primate Research Center (80s)-Lana
computer controlled language training “Give
apple which is orange)
• Kanzi-1300 utterances, 200 geometric symbols
• However, Herbert Terrace (1981)-Nim responded
according to CC not rules of the language
3.Communication in Other Animals
Whales and dolphins- “in basket,” “under basket”
“My father was poor but honest” (quoted in Restak, 1988, p.202)
4. Language
• A means of Communicating of thoughts and
feelings, using a system of socially shared but
arbitrary symbols (sounds, signs, or written
symbols) arranged according to rules of
5. Structure of Language
• Psycholinguistics-how language is acquired, produced, and
• Phonemes-the smallest units of sound in a spoken language
• Morphemes- the smallest units of meaning
• Syntax- specifies the rules for arranging and combining words to
form phrases and sentences
• Semantics- the meaning derived from morphemes, words, and
• Pragmatics- characteristics of spoken language, such as
intonation and gestures, that indicate social meaning of utterances.
6. Properties of Language
• Infinite creativity
– Capacity to create rather than imitate
• Displacement
– Capacity to communicate in another time or
7. Language and Cognition
• Language is not necessary for thinking
• Concepts can be understood without knowing the
word for the concept (e.g. roundness)
8. Language and Culture
• Linguistic-relativity hypothesis (Whorf (1956))
– Language structures the way we perceive the
• Criticism of linguistic-relativity hypothesis
– Images and abstract logical propositions may
be used as units of thought
– Range of concepts represent priority of the
language not cognitive limitation
9. Bilingualism
• In other countries the majority of citizens speak
two or more language
• Advantages of being bilingual:
– Metalinguistic skills, the capacity to think about lang.
– Ability to learn about the other culture in depth
• Disadvantages:
– Decreased efficiency memory tasks involving words
– But develop compensatory strategies, though respond
more slowly
• Lose accent – younger than 10 or 11 y. o.
10. Language Development
• At the age 17- 80,000 words
• From 18 m to 5- 14,000 words, average 9wrds/day
2-3 m- cooing sounds when along
20 weeks- mixes various vowels & consonants w/cooing
6 m- Babbles; utters phonemes of all language
8 m- focuses on phonemes, rhythm, & intonation of native language
12m- say single words; mimics sounds; understand some words
18-20m – uses two word sentences; 50 wrds, overextension
24m- 270 wrds; acquires suffixes & function wrds in a fixed sequence
30m – uses telegraphic speech
36m – begins acquisition of grammar rules; overregulation
11. Language Development
• Prelinguistic vocalizations
– Crying, cooing, babbling
• All children babble the same sounds (even
deaf children)
– By 9 – 10 months foreign sounds are dropped
• First word is spoken about 1 year
12. Development of Grammar
• Holophrase (2nd year)
– Single words that express complex meanings
– “Cookie” means “this is cookie” “I want cookie” “where is cookie?”
• Telegraphic speech (30mos), understanding syntax
– Two-word sentences
– Grammatically correct
– Sequence of emergence of various two-word
sentences is universal
13. Development of Grammar
• Overextension /underextension (18-20m)
– Application of a word, on the basis of some feature, to
a broader rage of objects than is appropriate (“Daddy”)
• Overregulation (36m)
– Application of regular grammatical rules to
irregular verbs and nouns
• Between 7- to 9-years
– Children realize words can have more than
one meaning
14. Nature and Nurture in Language
• Learning Theory
– Imitation and reinforcement,
– Social cognitive perspective
• Parent serve as models
– What is wrong w/these perspectives?
• Nativist Approach
– Innate factors cause children to attend to and perceive language
in certain ways
– neurologically prewired
– Do not need instructions or reinforcement, only presence of
15. Nativist Approach to Language
• Language acquisition device (LAD)- Chomsky
– Represents the inborn tendency
– Prepares nervous system to learn grammar
• Universal grammar
• Psycholinguistic theory
– Language acquisition involves interaction of
environmental influences and inborn tendency
to acquire language
Interactionist perspective similar to Psycholinguistic theory.
Reading to a child is very important for the language development!!!
Banishing Bilingualism
• Preparation: Ask a student in your class who is bilingual to
demonstrate their ability.
• For this demonstration, have a student (more if there are more
bilingual students) demonstrate their ability in the languages
learned. Ask them to talk about when they learned the languages
and how it has benefited them. Then present an article found in
most libraries titled “Banishing Bilingualism” written by Katz and
Kohl (2002). This article discusses efforts to banish bilingualism
from education and how some states have moved forward with this.
This topic can lead to a lively debate over bilingualism or English
Lecture 14th
What is Intelligence?
1. Intelligence
• Example, Marilyn Mach and Dr. Jarvik
• Did poorly in school: Churchill, Einstein, etc.
• IQ? Academic Achievement?
Cognitive & Emotional Intelligence, Nature of
Intelligence, and how it is measured. Where does
intelligence come from? Gifted & Retarded
2. What is Intelligence?
• American Association of Psychologists (APA)
defined intelligence as an individual’s “ability to
understand complex ideas,… to adapt effectively
to environment, … to learn from experience, to
engage in various forms of reasoning, and to
overcome obstacles by taking thought”
• Provides the basis for academic achievements
3. Theories of Intelligence
• Intelligence is made up of a number of mental
abilities (factors)
• Spearman’s g factor
– General intelligence
– s factor represents specific abilities
• Thurstone’s specific factors
– Primary mental abilities: verbal comprehension, numerical ability,
visual and spatial abilities, perceptual speed, word fluency,
memory & reasoning.
• Are those different ways of assessing g or distinct
4. Theory of Multiple Intelligences
• Howard Gardner (handout)
– Number of different intelligences
• Critics
5. Triarchic Theory of Intelligence
• Robert Sternberg
– Analytical
• Academic ability
– Creative
• Ability to cope with novel situations and
generate multiple solutions to problems
– Practical
• “Street smarts”
Some texts: componential, experiential, & naturalistic
6. Triarchic Theory of Intelligence
• Robert Sternberg
– Analytical
• Academic ability
– Creative
• Ability to cope with novel situations and
generate multiple solutions to problems
– Practical
• “Street smarts”
Some texts: componential, experiential, & naturalistic
7. Emotional Intelligence
• The ability to apply knowledge about emotions
to everyday life, involves an awareness of and
an ability to manage one’s own emotions, selfmotivation, empathy, and the ability to handle
relationships. (EQ)
• Intrapersonal and interpersonal skills (empathy)
• Self-insight and self-control (self-motivation)
• Allows for coping with stress, depression, and
aggressive behavior
8. Emotional Intelligence
• Managing emotions does not mean suppressing
them; not does it mean giving free rein to
everyday feeling.
• Goleman (1995)“A life without passion would be
a dull wasteland of neutrality, cut off and isolated
from the richness of life itself” (p.56)
• We manage our emotions by expressing them in
an appropriate manner.
9. Creativity and Intelligence
• Creativity-the ability to produce original, appropriate, & valuable
ideas &/or solutions to problems
• Creative people
– Do things that are novel and useful
– Take risks
– Defy limits
– Appreciate art and music
• Relationship between intelligence test scores and standard
measures of creativity is only moderate.
10. Divergent and Convergent Thinking
• Divergent thinking
– Freely associate to elements of problem
– Best used in measuring creativity
• Convergent thinking
– Thought is limited to present facts
– Best used in intelligence testing
• Interrelated
11. Savant Syndrome
(Rein Man?)
• An unusual combination of genius and low
performance in different areas
• Autistic individuals
• The puzzle of savant syndrome is slowly
12. Measurement of Intelligence
• Franz Gall (1758-1828)- measuring skull
• Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale (SBIS)
– Binet-Simon - produced child’s mental age
– SBIS adapted for intelligence quotient (IQ)
• IQ reflects relationship between mental and
actual age
• (Mental Age / Chronological Age)x100=IQ
13. Measurement of Intelligence
• Wechsler Scales (the latest WAIS-III)
• 16 and older (but has for kids as well)
• Deviation Score
– Separate subscales
• Verbal and performance tasks
– Three IQ scores are obtained:
1. Verbal IQ
2. Performance IQ
3. Full Scale IQ
14. Approximate Distribution of IQ Scores
15. Differences in Intellectual Functioning
• Socioeconomic and Ethnic Differences
– Consideration of social class
• Lower-class U.S. children score 10 – 15 IQ
points lower than middle- and upper-class
– Consideration of ethnicity
• Impact of social class
– Asian Americans more likely to graduate high
school and complete college
16. Do Intelligence Tests Contain Cultural
• Tests may measure familiarity with dominant
middle-class culture:
• Caesar is to salad as______ is to brandy.
a. Churchill
b. Napoleon
c. Hitler
d. Lincoln
• Culture-free Intelligence Tests
– Cattel’s Culture-Fair Intelligence Test
• European American children outperform African
American children on “culture-free” test
17. Sample Items from Cattell’s Culture-Fair
Intelligence Test
18. Gender Differences in Intelligence Tests
• Intelligence tests do not show overall differences
in cognitive ability
– Girls superior to boys in verbal ability
– Boys excel in visual-spatial ability
– Boys tend to score higher on math tests
• Group scores represent greater variation within
the group than between the groups
Nature and Nurture in
Do You Think of Intelligence as
an Inherited or a learned
19. Genetic Influences on Intelligence
• Francis Galton (1822-1911)- heredity
• Environmentalists- intelligence product of …..
• Kinship studies
– IQ scores of identical twins (MZ) are more
alike than for any other pairs
– Moderate correlations between fraternal
twins, siblings and parents and their children
– Weak correlations between children and their
foster parents and between cousins
20. Genetic Influences on Intelligence
• Twin Studies
– IQ scores of MZ twins reared together have
higher correlation than MZ twins reared apart
• Being reared together is related to IQ
• Minnesota Center for Twin and Adoption
Research (Bouchard (1997), - reported that
various types of twin studies have consistently
yielded heritability of .60 to .70 for intelligence
21. Genetic Influences on Intelligence
• Adoption Studies
– Stronger relationship between IQ scores of
adopted children and their biological parents
than between children and adoptive parents
22. Heritability of Intelligence
• Heritability is between 40% and 60%
– About half the difference between your IQ
score and the IQ scores of other people can
be explained by heredity
• Environment is also important
• Being reared together is related to IQ
23. Findings of Studies of the Relationship
between IQ Scores and Heredity
24. The Complex Web of Factors That Affect
Intellectual Functioning

Chapter 8: Thinking, Language & Intelligence